The Company expects elevated production at Öksüt through mid-2024, as the inventory and stockpiles are processed through the adsorption, desorption, and recovery (“ADR”) plant
Centerra Gold Inc. (“Centerra” or the “Company”) (TSX: CG) (NYSE: CGAU) is pleased to announce its strategic plan for each asset in the Company’s portfolio along with the Company’s approach to capital allocation.
President and CEO, Paul Tomory, commented, “We are excited to roll-out our strategic plan that focuses on maximizing the value for each asset in our portfolio. The plan identifies the opportunities at each asset that will drive future value and growth for the Company. Specifically, at Mount Milligan, we expect strong operational performance in the next few years, and we will work to optimize operations and maximize the value of the large deposit. At Öksüt, our life of mine plan demonstrates particularly strong production and cost performance over the next two years with a steady gold production profile continuing throughout the life of mine. Our prefeasibility study on the Thompson Creek molybdenum mine supports a disciplined path to restarting operations and realizing significant vertical integration synergies with the Langeloth Metallurgical Facility. And finally, at the Goldfield Project, we have decided to re-evaluate the project scope of work to achieve a lower capital flowsheet and to maximize the returns on the project. Our exploration focus will now be on oxide and transition material, with the timing of an initial resource estimate contingent on exploration success and metallurgical testwork.”
“In conjunction with execution of the strategic plan, we have also developed a capital allocation strategy which focuses on returning capital to shareholders through dividends and share buybacks, investing in internal projects and exploration within our current portfolio and evaluating external opportunities for growth. We believe that Centerra’s exposure to gold and base metals is a differentiating factor, however, our strategic plan has us remaining a gold-focused company. Today’s announcement provides a clear path to delivering safe and sustainable operations and creating value for our shareholders and local stakeholders in the future.”
Mount Milligan’s production in the first half of 2023 was impacted by mine sequencing and lower than planned gold grades as a result of mining in an ore-waste transition zone, which caused lower metal recoveries and throughput challenges in the processing plant in the first quarter. The Company has completed mining in the ore-waste transition zone in Phase 9 and is currently mining the higher-grade copper and gold zones from Phase 7 and Phase 9 in the second half of 2023.
Centerra views Mount Milligan’s substantial resource base as a strategic asset and is advancing work on productivity and cost efficiencies in concert with mine plan optimization to offset some of the recent inflationary pressures that have impacted the industry. In parallel, Centerra is working to explore ways to maximize the value of the very large mineral endowment.
As previously disclosed, Öksüt resumed full operations on June 5, 2023. In June 2023, the mine started ramping up its crushing, stacking, and processing activities and produced 20,503 ounces during the month. Öksüt continues to process gold-in-carbon inventory, and on July 31, 2023 Centerra issued 2023 gold production guidance of 180,000 to 190,000 ounces.
The Company expects elevated production at Öksüt through mid-2024, as the inventory and stockpiles are processed through the adsorption, desorption, and recovery (“ADR”) plant, at which point, the production levels are expected to return to steady state. The life of mine (“LOM”) plan, in the table below, has been updated to reflect the restart of operations and other optimizations. The updated Öksüt LOM will generate positive free cash flow, and the mine remains a strategic asset in Centerra’s portfolio.
Source: Company Press Release